Colonel sets school record with 68 points
Gabriel rushes for 174 yards, 3 TDs, Lambert and Stanley each score two touchdowns
AMERICAN CORNER — The Colonel Richardson High football team gave the home crowd a lot to cheer for Friday night, Sept. 28, by setting a school record for points in a 68-31 victor y over Arcadia, Va.
The single-game scoring mark tops the 64 points the Colonels scored against Snow Hill in 2016. But it was a defense play that sparked the outburst.
Colonel’s Jordan Gabriel led the way with 174 yards rushing and three touchdowns. Tyler Stanley rushed with 136 yards and two touchdowns. Mason Lambert added 102 yards on the ground and two touchdowns.
Colonel’s offense struggled to gain consistency in the first half, trailing the Firebirds 1514 late in the second quarter. Arcadia (3-3) used the passing game to take the lead, and looked for more points with less than a minute to play before halftime.
But that is when Colonel defensive back Ryan Stanton turned the game around. Arcadia quarterback Lethon Williams rolled right and threw downfield. Stanton streaked to the ball, leaped, made the interception then sliced through the Firebirds on his way to a 60-yard touchdown to give the Colonels a 20-15 lead.
“Ryan’s play was huge,” Colonel head coach Dan Mangum said. “He dropped into coverage, and made a good read. Once he caught the pass, he did a great job of finishing the play with a great runback. Gotta give credit to the whole defense because they all made big blocks to get him to the end zone.”
After Stanton’s pick-6, the Colonel offense scored on seven straight second-half possessions to pull away.
Colonel quarterback Jackie Zebron opened the third quarter with an 11-yard touchdown pass to Dakota Wilson for a 26-15 lead.
Arcadia did not go away, with Shykeam Jacobs capping a seven-play drive with a 1-yard touchdown run and two-point conversation to cut the deficit to 26-23.
The Colonels responded quickly with bruising runs by Gabriel, who rushed for 20 yards and 16 yards on consecutive carries. Stanley increased the lead on the drive’s third play with a 12yard touchdown run up the middle. Gabriel’s two-point conversation put CR up 34-23.
Zebron got into the act on defense when he intercepted an Arcadia pass. Stanley’s 34yard sweep set up Gabriel’s 21-yard touchdown up the middle for a 40-23 lead.
A long kickoff return gave Arcadia field possession inside the CR 10-yard line. Williams scored on a 1-yard sneak, then added a two-point run to bring the Firebirds within 40-31.
The Colonel running attack continue to grind up yards on its next possession, going 52 yards on six plays. Gabriel scored his second TD on a 1-yard plunge. Stanley added a two-point conversion for a 48-31 lead at the end of the third quarter.
“After the half, we made some adjustments, and we started clicking,” coach Mangum said. “We wore them down. The way our offense is built wears teams down.
“We could get that methodic, slow first down here, first down there.” he added. “But then we broke some big runs. You saw more of the big runs in the second half as we continued to pound the ball. We took advantage of it.”
The Firebirds could not muster any more offense in the fourth quarter. The first drive ended on consecutive sacks by Brandon Jester and Wilson, respectively.
After a punt, Zebron connected with Wilson again for a touchdown, this time for 30 yards and a 54-31 lead.
Colonel defensive back Elijah Palmer got the ball back for the offense with a diving interception. Lambert scored two plays later on a 3-yard run. Remy Mangum added the extra point for a 61-31 lead.
A promising kick return for Arcadia ended with a fumble, which was recovered by Palmer, his third turnover of the game. Gabriel capped the scoring with a 60-yard touchdown run, highlighted by a powerful stiff arm to break free from a defender.
The first half was a sharp contrast from the second-half shootout. Colonel used an 11play drive to march 76 yards. The longest play of the drive came on Stanley’s 16-yard touchdown run through the middle. Lambert added a twopoint run to give CR an 8-0 lead.
Arcadia countered with 12play scoring drive to tie the score. Williams connected with Bryden Bibbins for a 10yard touchdown pass. Bibbins caught the two-point conversion to even the score at 8-8.
Colonel responded with a 44-yard touchdown run by Lambert to take a 14-8 lead. Arcadia used another 12play drive to take the lead. Williams went deep to Airey Finney for a 29-yard touchdown. The extra point gave the Firebirds a 15-14 lead midway through the second quarter.
Colonel Richardson fullback Jordan Gabriel breaks a tackle and races 60 yards for a touchdown against Arcadia Friday, Sept. 28. This scoring run broke the school record for most points scored in a game for Colonel.